In the News
Called Lutathera, it selectively kills tumor cells with a radioactive compound. Clinical trials proved it effective in halting tumor progression, in some cases allowing patients to resume their normal life. Lutathera, sold by Advanced Accelerator Applications in France, was approved in January.
William Apodaca, 31, was first to be treated in San Diego. For the first three doses of Lutathera, Apodaca had to travel from San Diego to Los Angeles.
For the fourth and final dose in late November, Apodaca received the drug at Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center.
For San Diegans, the ability to get treated in the hospital and return home directly is convenient for recuperation and also avoids the expense of a hotel, Apodaca said.
“I don’t have to deal with the hassle of the LA traffic,” he said. “Getting the treatment takes half a day. And you’re pretty fatigued after that. You need to get good rest for the first couple of days.”
Lutathera represents a step toward turning this cancer into a chronic disease that can be managed long-term, said Dr. Marin Xavier, his oncologist.